Enhanced CRB checks for Lincoln taxi drivers to continue

The City of Lincoln Council will continue to perform enhanced CRB checks on city taxi and private hire drivers.

The announcement comes after a policy forbidding enhanced Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) was withdrawn by the Home Office this week.

Introduced in March 2011, the Home Office guidance stated that only standard checks could be used as evidence when deciding whether or not an individual was ‘fit and proper’ to be granted a licence.

A standard check reveals only a record of previous criminal convictions, cautions and warnings, whereas an enhanced check can give any relevant information that local police and other agencies may hold on an individual, such as whether they are prevented from working with children or vulnerable adults.

The City of Lincoln Council was one of just a handful of local authorities who spoke out against the guidance, maintaining the stance that enhanced CRB checks were needed to ensure the safety of the public when using Hackney carriages and private hire vehicles.

The City Council lobbied Parliament, the CRB and the Local Government Associated to bring about the change in guidance.

The Home Office guidance will now be revoked, with councils able to carry out enhanced checks once again.

City Councillor Ric Metcalfe, Leader of the City Council, said: “The vast majority of those who want to hold taxi licences are honest people who provide a valuable service and keep people safe.

“However, as the licensing authority, we are responsible for ensuring the safety of people using licensed vehicles and it is recognised that there could be a small number of people not suitable to hold licences.

“Enhanced checks reveal relevant information, which helps our Licensing Committee to make well-informed decisions on whether or not to give licences to potential drivers.”

Source: City of Lincoln Council